With the participation of B&H to the European Program MEDIA the local audio-visual sector, it joined the EU before the state. With this, B&H enabled the local creative industries to develop on the European and international level through access to huge financial resources, said the Deputy Minister of Civil Affairs of B&H to Fena Denisa Sarajlić-Maglić.
Sarajlić-Maglić believes that with this, the creators of B&H in the field of cinematography would officially become part of a wider network of European cinematography and create an easier access to markets outside of B&H.
“Access to founds of the MEDIA program is based exclusively on competitiveness and the quality of offered projects, in which I am certain that the projects from B&H would lead to’’, she said.
The Ministry of Civil Affairs of B&H was the key institution in conducting and concluding negotiations on accession of B&H to the MEDIA program. Sarajlić-Maglić added that, unfortunately, the entire process lasted longer than it was planned because of the incompatibility of national legislation with European legislation in the area of audio-visual activities.
However, when the legal barriers of access to the MEDIA program was finally overcome, the coordination between the Ministry of Transport and Communication, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate for European Integration and the Mission of B&H to the EU in Brussels intensified. With this, the Ministry of Civil Affairs in 2012 was further engaged in accelerating the procedure of joining this program.
Sarajlić-Maglić underlined the importance of the MEDIA program for the development of audio-visual activities to the EU talks and its five-year budget of more than 750 million euros.
“Access to one such fund for a country like ours, whose creative potential clearly exceeds the limited domestic sources of funding, means a key step towards strengthening the creative industry. Through participation in the program of the Council of Europe Euroimage, we have shown that we have ideas and projects that are very competitive in the European framework, and that we have built capacity in the audio-visual sector that could successfully apply for such types of funds’’, she said.
She recalled that since B&H became a member in 2005, projects in B&H through membership to Eurimage until now have succeeded in pulling in more than 5 million KM, and the funds that the state pays for participation at an annual level amounts to 240.000 KM.
“We are confident that in the same way it would be worthwhile and the funds paid for the entry ticket for participation of B&H in the MEDIA program. That card for this year amounted to 40.000 euros, of which 36.000 euros was earlier secured from the EU IPA 2011, so that the overall ‘financial burden’ for access to the program for the state of B&H for this year amounted to 4.000 euros’’, said Sarajlić-Maglić.
The opinion is that for this year the funds would return to them several times more, because the B&H Ministry of Civil Affairs has information that currently for B&H applicants around 200.000 euros is approved.
“That is money that became available with the official access of B&H to the MEDIA program. It is important to emphasize that the competition to which our applicants could register is still open, and which can be found on the official website of the MEDIA program’’, said Sarajlić-Maglić.
She assessed that it is particularly important for the program to contain a large development component that supports the training and professional development of professionals, development of production projects, distribution and promotion of films and audiovisual program within and outside of the EU, film festivals, and the introduction and use of new technologies.
Also, the program is wide and it includes a large number of various users, intended for companies and individuals, institutions, associations, production houses, distributors, sales agents, directors, producers, writers and others that deal with audiovisual activities.
“It is up to us as a country to continue to support the capacity building of the audio-visual sector and through laws and regulations to ensure additional institutional security to our very promising creative industry’’, concluded in an interview for Fena the Deputy Minister of B&H Civil Affairs Denisa Sarajlić-Maglić.
All from B&H who are interested could directly apply for funds from this program, without the means of any B&H institution.